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Pope comes out in support of Mexico’s bishops to oppose gay marriage

Pope comes out in support of Mexico’s bishops to oppose gay marriage

Pope Francis has come out on Sunday in support of efforts to oppose gay marriage, four months after he sat out a debate on civil unions for same-sex couples in Italy.

He made his stance clear this time in reference to an ongoing national debate over gay marriage in Mexico.

‘I join willingly the Bishops of Mexico in supporting the efforts of the Church and civil society in favour of the family and of life, which at this time require special pastoral and cultural attention worldwide,’ said Francis after the weekly Angelus prayer.

This also comes a day after an estimated 215,000 people walked down the streets of Mexico City on Saturday dressed in white, carrying balloons at a rally in opposition to the push by the country’s President, Enrique Pena Nieto, to legalize same-sex marriage. Pena Nieto had earlier proposed legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide in May this year – as opposed to the current situation of it being legal in only certain parts of Mexico such as Mexico City, the northern state of Coahuila and Quintana Roo state on the Caribbean coast.

Part of Pena Nieto’s proposed bill also includes an educational reform, to include gender education in schools – something the Pope has repeatedly rejected, citing it as a form of ‘ideological colonization’.

In reference to last week’s murder of two priests and kidnapping of a third in Mexico, Francis also shared that he was praying for the violence in the country to end.

Some bishops, however, seem to be ready to take this fight to the end if they needed to.

Among them is Bishop Pedro Pablo Elizondo of Cancun, who shared that he is ‘willing to go to prison to defend the family’, should it come to that.

‘I think some charitable soul would go to visit me, especially in this year of mercy,’ said Elizondo.

The bishop also warned that the Mexican government might accuse those who voice their opposition of gay marriage, of ‘civil disobedience’.

This support for the bishops in Mexico is by far one of the most vocal stances the Pope has ever made – Francis had earlier declined to be involved in the debate for civil unions and adoption rights for same-sex couples in Italy, citing that the Pope ‘doesn’t get involved with Italian politics because he ‘belongs to all’.

The Pope has also maintained earlier that his beliefs match ‘what the Church thinks’.